|2019 FIA World Rally Championship|
FIA World Rally Championship-2 Pro
FIA World Rally Championship-2
FIA Junior World Rally Championship
The 2019 FIA World Rally Championship is the forty-seventh season of the World Rally Championship, an auto racing championship recognised by the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) as the highest class of international rallying. Teams and crews will compete in fourteen events for the World Rally Championships for Drivers, Co-drivers and Manufacturers. Crews are free to compete in cars complying with World Rally Car and Group R regulations; however, only Manufacturers competing with World Rally Cars homologated under regulations introduced in 2017 are eligible to score points in the Manufacturers' championship. The series will once again be supported by the World Rally Championship-2 category at every round and by the Junior World Rally Championship at selected events. The World Rally Championship-3 was discontinued.
After the fourth round, Thierry Neuville and Nicolas Gilsoul lead the drivers' and co-drivers' championships by two points ahead of defending champions Sébastien Ogier and Julien Ingrassia. Ott Tänak and Martin Järveoja are third, a further three points behind. In the manufacturers' championship, Hyundai Shell Mobis WRT hold a twelve-point lead over Citroën Total WRT.
- 1 Calendar
- 2 Entries
- 3 Rule changes
- 4 Season report
- 5 Results and standings
- 6 Notes
- 7 References
- 8 External links
|Round||Dates||Rally||Rally headquarters||Rally details|
|1||24 January||27 January||Rallye Automobile Monte Carlo||Gap, Hautes-Alpes||Mixed||15||302.77 km||[a][b]|
|2||14 February||17 February||Rally Sweden||Torsby, Värmland||Snow||19||316.80 km|
|3||7 March||10 March||Rally Guanajuato México||León, Guanajuato||Gravel||21||316.51 km|
|4||28 March||31 March||Tour de Corse||Bastia, Haute-Corse||Tarmac||14||347.51 km|
|5||25 April||28 April||Rally Argentina||Villa Carlos Paz, Córdoba||Gravel||18||349.48 km|
|6||9 May||12 May||Rally Chile||Talcahuano, Concepción||Gravel||17||325.70 km|
|7||30 May||2 June||Rally de Portugal||Matosinhos, Porto||Gravel||20||311.23 km|
|8||13 June||16 June||Rally Italia Sardegna||Alghero, Sardinia||Gravel||19||313.44 km|
|9||1 August||4 August||Rally Finland||Jyväskylä, Keski-Suomi||Gravel||23||307.22 km|
|10||22 August||25 August||ADAC Rallye Deutschland||Bostalsee, Saarland||Tarmac||TBA||TBA||[c]|
|11||12 September||15 September||Rally of Turkey||Marmaris, Muğla||Gravel||TBA||TBA|
|12||3 October||6 October||Wales Rally GB||Deeside, Flintshire||Gravel||TBA||TBA||[c]|
|13||24 October||27 October||RACC Rally Catalunya de España||Salou, Tarragona||Mixed||TBA||TBA||[c][d]|
|14||14 November||17 November||Rally Australia||Coffs Harbour, New South Wales||Gravel||TBA||TBA||[c]|
Following the return of Rally Turkey to the championship in 2018, the FIA announced plans to expand the calendar to fourteen rounds in 2019 with the long-term objective of running sixteen championship events. Twelve prospective bids for events were put together, including candidate events in New Zealand, Japan and Chile. Prospective events in Kenya, Croatia, Canada and Estonia expressed interest in joining the calendar within five years.
The planned expansion put pressure on European rounds to maintain their position on the calendar as teams were unwilling to contest sixteen events immediately. The Tour de Corse and Rally Italia Sardegna proved to be unpopular among teams for the logistical difficulties of travelling to Corsica and Sardinia and low spectator attendance at the events. Organisers of Rally Japan reached an agreement with the sport's promoter to host a rally in 2019, with the proposed event moving from Sapporo on the island of Hokkaido to Toyota City in Honshu. However, plans to return to Japan were abandoned when the promoter came under pressure to retain the Tour de Corse.
The proposed events in Japan and Kenya will run candidate events in 2019 in a bid to join the championship in 2020. The calendar published in October 2018 included Rally Chile as part of the expansion to fourteen rounds. The event will be based in Concepción and run on gravel roads. Rally Chile will be run back-to-back with Rally Argentina.
The route of Rallye Monte Carlo was shortened by 71.93 km (44.7 mi) compared to the 2018 route. The route was revised after rule changes that were introduced for the 2019 championship limited the maximum distance of a route to 350 km (217.5 mi). Organisers of the Tour de Corse announced plans for a new route, with up to three-quarters of the 2019 route being revised from the 2018 rally.
The following teams and crews are competing in the 2019 FIA World Rally Championship. Citroën, Ford, Hyundai and Toyota are all represented by manufacturer teams and eligible to score points in the FIA World Rally Championship for Manufacturers.
|No.||Driver name||Co-driver name||Rounds|
|Citroën||Citroën Total WRT||Citroën C3 WRC||M||1||Sébastien Ogier||Julien Ingrassia||1–6|
|4||Esapekka Lappi||Janne Ferm||1–6|
|Ford||M-Sport Ford WRT||Ford Fiesta WRC||M||3||Teemu Suninen||Marko Salminen||1–6|
|7||Pontus Tidemand||Ola Fløene||1–2|
|33||Elfyn Evans||Scott Martin||1–6|
|TBA||Gus Greensmith||Elliott Edmondson||TBA|
|Hyundai||Hyundai Shell Mobis WRT||Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC||M||6||Dani Sordo||Carlos del Barrio||3–5|
|11||Thierry Neuville||Nicolas Gilsoul||1–6|
|19||Sébastien Loeb||Daniel Elena||1–2, 4, 6|
|89||Andreas Mikkelsen||Anders Jæger-Amland||1–3, 5–6|
|Toyota||Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT||Toyota Yaris WRC||M||5||Kris Meeke||Sebastian Marshall||1–6|
|8||Ott Tänak||Martin Järveoja||1–6|
|10||Jari-Matti Latvala||Miikka Anttila||1–6|
|No.||Driver name||Co-driver name||Rounds|
|Citroën||Mauro Miele||Citroën DS3 WRC||M||20||Mauro Miele||Luca Beltrame||1|
|Jean-Charles Beaubelique||M||40||Jean-Charles Beaubelique||Julien Pesenti||4|
|Robert Simonetti||M||43||Robert Simonetti||Célia Simonetti||4|
|Ford||M-Sport Ford WRT||Ford Fiesta WRC||M||37||Lorenzo Bertelli||Simone Scattolin||2, 6|
|Janne Tuohino||M||92||Janne Tuohino||Mikko Markkula||2|
|Armando Pereira||Ford Fiesta RS WRC||M||41||Armando Pereira||Rémi Tutélaire||4|
|Alain Vauthier||M||42||Alain Vauthier||Gilbert Dini||4|
|Toyota||GRX Team||Toyota Yaris WRC||M||68||Marcus Grönholm||Timo Rautiainen||2|
Citroën will only enter two cars for the entire season. The team had two full-time entries in 2018, with a third car run on a part-time basis. Citroën cited a change in sponsorship arrangements as being the reason behind the decision to forgo a third car. M-Sport Ford will also scale back to two full-time entries, with a third car entered on a round-by-round basis. Malcolm Wilson stepped down from his role as M-Sport Ford's team principal to oversee the company's wider commercial operations. Richard Millener was appointed as his replacement. Hyundai also replaced their team principal Michel Nandan with their customer racing manager Andrea Adamo. Toyota expanded to four cars, adding an additional car on a part-time basis. The fourth car will be run by Toyota's factory team, but entered under Marcus Grönholm's GRX Team banner.
Sébastien Ogier and Julien Ingrassia left M-Sport Ford to return to Citroën. Ogier and Ingrassia had previously competed with the French manufacturer in 2011 before moving to Volkswagen Motorsport. Esapekka Lappi and Janne Ferm also joined the team after two years with Toyota. Craig Breen and Scott Martin left the team when Citroën announced that they would scale back their involvement in the championship to two full-time entries for Ogier and Lappi. They were unable to secure seats for the start of the championship. Mads Østberg and Torstein Eriksen remained with the Citroën team, agreeing to a full-time factory campaign in the WRC-2 class in R5 version of the C3. Teemu Suninen was promoted to a full-time drive with M-Sport Ford, effectively replacing Ogier. Pontus Tidemand and Ola Fløene will contest selected rounds with M-Sport Ford. Tidemand and Fløene will share the car with Gus Greensmith.
Two-time World Drivers' and Co-drivers' Champions Marcus Grönholm and Timo Rautiainen will return to the championship for the first time since 2010, making one appearance with Toyota. Sébastien Loeb and Daniel Elena signed a contract to contest six rounds with Hyundai, sharing an i20 with the crew of Dani Sordo and Carlos del Barrio. Hayden Paddon was left without a drive for the season. Paddon's co-driver Sebastian Marshall moved to Toyota. He will partner Kris Meeke, who returns to full-time competition after being fired by Citroën halfway through the 2018 championship. Teemu Suninen also changed co-drivers, with Marko Salminen replacing Mikko Markkula. Daniel Barritt split with Elfyn Evans to partner Takamoto Katsuta in the World Rally Championship-2; Evans will instead be joined by Scott Martin.
Drivers were permitted to choose a permanent number, similar to the numbering systems used in Formula 1, MotoGP and DTM. Prior to the 2019 championship, the numbering system was based on championship standings from the previous year. The reigning world champion still competed with the number 1.
The championship's support categories were restructured. The World Rally Championship-3 was discontinued and a new class was created within the World Rally Championship-2. The class, known as World Rally Championship-2 Pro, is open to manufacturer-supported teams entering cars complying with Group R5 regulations. Two-wheel drive cars and Group R2 and R3 cars are still eligible to enter rallies.
Rallye Automobile Monte Carlo
The first round of the 2019 World Rally Championship saw another epic battle between the three rivals Sébastien Ogier, who started his new Citroën career this season, Thierry Neuville and Ott Tänak. The Estonian took an early lead during the first two night stages, but a puncture on Friday forced him to stop, which cost him two minutes to replace. Neuville then took a short-lived lead althrough he missed a junction at the same stage and lost around 20 seconds. However, Ogier hammered home his advantage on the following stage and ended the day by only 2.0 seconds. On Saturday and Sunday, Ogier and Neuville were neck and neck whereas Tänak started to chase time. He set four out of four fastest stage times at leg 2 and pulled himself back to fifth overall after Andreas Mikkelsen, Elfyn Evans and Esapekka Lappi retired from the rally due to lost wheel, off road and suspension damage respectively. Having overtaken teammate Jari-Matti Latvala and nine-time world champion Sébastien Loeb, Tänak eventually finished at the podium, behind Ogier, who won the rally for the six straight years, and a 4.3-second-behind Neuville. From fourth to tenth were Loeb, Latvala, a returned Kris Meeke, who put his fifth power stage victory in his pocket, new championship WRC-2 Pro winner Gus Greensmith, WRC-2 winner Yoann Bonato, Stéphane Sarrazin and Adrien Fourmaux.
Coming into the only snow event in the calendar, Sébastien Ogier was first on the road. However, a small mistake caused him stuck in the snowbank and there were no spectators to push him out. As a result, Rally2 for the defending world champion. On the final stage of the first leg, Jari-Matti Latvala also went wide over a crest. By choosing to run under the Rally2 regulation, he reduced his time loss to just ten minutes. Teemu Suninen surprisingly put himself on top at the end of Friday, leading from Ott Tänak by 2 seconds but that surprise did not sustain to Saturday. Beaching his Fiesta in the morning loop dropped him down to eighth. Worse still, in the afternoon loop, he hit a tree and damaged his roll cage, which forced the young Finn to retire from the leg. Tänak then took over the rally and comfortably dominated to win his first snow rally in his career with his ninth power stage victory to take maximum points and go into the lead of the championship for the first time in his career. Although Esapekka Lappi almost rolled on Friday, he still successfully finished ahead of Thierry Neuville, who made a few mistakes at this weekend, by three seconds. Andreas Mikkelsen, who once occupied the second place, completed the rally in fourth in the end after a lucky escape from the snowbank on Saturday. From fifth to tenth were Elfyn Evans, Kris Meeke, nine-time world champion Sébastien Loeb, localman Pontus Tidemand, WRC-2 winner Ole Christian Veiby and rally veteran Janne Tuohino.
Rally Guanajuato México
The high-altitude terrain of Rally Mexico provided difficult conditions for the drivers. Teemu Suninen was forced to retire from the rally when he went off the road only a few kilometers into the second stage. Andreas Mikkelsen led the rally until he hit a rock and damaged his suspension. Teammate Dani Sordo, who was the first time in a World Rally Car this season, suffered a electrical issue as he was fighting for the win. Jari-Matti Latvala was running in fourth before retiring with alternator failure. Esapekka Lappi got stuck and had to run under Rally2 regulation. Kris Meeke had a flat tyre and damaged his suspension, which dropped him from the lead down to fifth place. Although Sébastien Ogier had a puncture on the opening stage of leg 2, a red flag caused by his teammate Lappi's off saved his rally and eventually won the event with a power stage victory. Ott Tänak, who was first on the road on the first day, finished second, with Elfyn Evans rounding out of the podium. Thierry Neuville completed the rally in fourth after Friday's puncture, with Meeke in fifth. From sixth to tenth were WRC-2 winner Benito Guerra, eighteen-year-old rising star Marco Bulacia Wilkinson, Latvala, Sordo and local driver Ricardo Triviño.
Tour de Corse
Corsica played a cruel joke with Elfyn Evans, who set amazing pace at the entire weekend and led the rally as championship leader Ott Tänak suffered a puncture on Saturday. However, a front-right puncture in the ultimate power stage dropped him down to third. Several more punctures also happened on Toyota duo Kris Meeke, who won another power stage, and Jari-Matti Latvala. In the end, it was Thierry Neuville that won the rally for the second time as well as his first season victory. With the victory, the Belgian moved two places to the top spot in the championship. So were their team, Hyundai. Defending world champion finshed ahead of Evans in second, following by tarmac expert Dani Sordo in fourth. Teemu Suninen completed the event in fifth and managed to stay ahead of championship contender Tänak in fifth after a trouble-free weekend, only 6.2 seconds behind Sordo. Esapekka Lappi, who was lack of paceat the whole weekend, finished in seventh. Nine-time world champion Sébastien Loeb finshed the rally in eighth after a suspension damage on the very first stage, with Meeke and Latvala completing the top ten. This is the first time of the season that top ten were all covered by World Rally Cars.
Results and standings
|Round||Event||Winning driver||Winning co-driver||Winning entrant||Winning time||Report|
|1||Rallye Automobile Monte Carlo||Sébastien Ogier||Julien Ingrassia||Citroën Total WRT||3:21:15.9||Report|
|2||Rally Sweden||Ott Tänak||Martin Järveoja||Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT||2:47:30.0||Report|
|3||Rally Guanajuato México||Sébastien Ogier||Julien Ingrassia||Citroën Total WRT||3:37:08.0||Report|
|4||Tour de Corse||Thierry Neuville||Nicolas Gilsoul||Hyundai Shell Mobis WRT||3:22:59.0||Report|
|7||Rally de Portugal||Report|
|8||Rally Italia Sardegna||Report|
|10||ADAC Rallye Deutschland||Report|
|11||Marmaris Rally of Turkey||Report|
|12||Wales Rally GB||Report|
|13||RACC Rally Catalunya de España||Report|
Points were awarded to the top ten classified finishers in each event. In the manufacturers' championship, teams were eligible to nominate three crews to score points, but these points were only awarded to the top two classified finishers representing a manufacturer and driving a 2017-specification World Rally Car. There were also five bonus points awarded to the winners of the Power stage, four points for second place, three for third, two for fourth and one for fifth. Power Stage points were only awarded in the drivers' and co-drivers' championships.
FIA World Rally Championship for Drivers
FIA World Rally Championship for Co-Drivers
FIA World Rally Championship for Manufacturers
- The Monte Carlo Rally was run on a tarmac and snow surface.
- The third stage of the rally was cancelled on safety grounds when spectator areas became overcrowded.
- Date subject to confirmation.
- The first leg of Rally Catalunya will run on gravel stages and the second and third legs on tarmac stages.
- "FIA announces World Motor Sport Council decisions". fia.com. Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile. 12 October 2018. Retrieved 12 October 2018.
- "Chile steps up to 2019 WRC". wrc.com. WRC Promoter GmbH. 12 October 2018. Retrieved 12 October 2018.
- "Rally Calendar Overview". wrc.com. WRC Promoter GmbH. 18 February 2019. Retrieved 18 February 2019.
- Evans, David (12 October 2018). "Tour of Corsica announces 2019 World Rally Championship reprieve". autosport.com. Motorsport Network. Retrieved 14 October 2018.
- Herrero, Daniel (13 October 2018). "Australia remains finale on 2019 WRC calendar". speedcafe.com. Speedcafe. Retrieved 13 October 2018.
- "Season 2019 WRC". ewrc-results.com. Retrieved 29 January 2019.
- Evans, David (4 July 2018). "Japan and Chile now both expected to host 2019 WRC rounds". autosport.com. Motorsport Network. Retrieved 4 July 2018.
- Howard, Tom (17 November 2017). "Rally Aus continues push for multi-year WRC deal". speedcafe.com. Retrieved 12 April 2018.
- Coch, Mat (9 February 2018). "Canada seeking to host WRC from 2023". speedcafe.com. Retrieved 12 April 2018.
- "FIA signs agreement for 'modern-era' Safari Rally". autosport.com. Motorsport Network. 22 June 2018. Retrieved 22 June 2018.
- "Urmo Aava: eesmärk on jõuda WRC sarja, mitte nendega konkureerida" [Urmo Aava: the goal is to reach WRC, not to be their rival] (in Estonian). Eesti Rahvusringhääling. 30 May 2018.
- "Rally Estonia naaseb ja tahab murda 2021. aastaks MM-sarja" [Rally Estonia returns and wants to reach the World Championship by 2021] (in Estonian). Postimees. 1 November 2017.
- Evans, David (14 June 2018). "WRC team pushing for Italy 2019 boycott over Sardinia route". motorsport.com. Motorsport Network. Retrieved 6 July 2018.
- Evans, David (22 August 2018). "Rally Japan gets go-ahead from WRC Promoter for 2019 event". autosport.com. Motorsport Network. Archived from the original on 23 August 2018.
- Evans, David (11 October 2018). "Rally Japan's WRC return set to be abandoned at FIA council meeting". autosport.com. Motorsport Network. Retrieved 11 October 2018.
- Evans, David (12 October 2018). "2019 WRC calendar: 14-round schedule given green light by FIA WMSC". autosport.com. Motorsport Network. Retrieved 12 October 2018.
- "86è Rallye Automobile Monte-Carlo 2018" (PDF). acm.mc (in French). Automobile Club de Monaco. Retrieved 29 December 2017.
- Evans, David (9 January 2019). "M-Sport hands WRC2 driver Greensmith WRC chance". motorsport.com. Motorsport Network. Retrieved 9 January 2019.
- Herrero, Dan (22 December 2018). "M-Sport officially registers for 2019 WRC". speedcafe.com. Speedcafe. Retrieved 22 December 2018.
- "Michelin signs new WRC agreement". wrc.com. WRC Promoter GmbH. 13 October 2016. Retrieved 9 December 2018.
The French tyre company and WRC Promoter have agreed an extension of their current partnership under which Michelin will be Official Tyre of the WRC until the end of 2019.
- "87. Rallye Automobile Monte-Carlo" (PDF). Retrieved 15 January 2019.
- "Entry list Rallye Automobile de Monte Carlo 2019". Retrieved 15 January 2019.
- "Rally Sweden 2019 Official Entry List" (PDF). rallysweden.com. Rally Sweden. 18 January 2019. Retrieved 18 January 2019.
- "Rally Guanajuato México 2019 Official Entry List" (PDF). rallymexico.com. Rally Mexico. 14 February 2019. Retrieved 17 February 2019.
- "Corsica linea Tour de Corse 2019 Entry List" (PDF). tourdecorse.com. tourdecorse.com. 9 March 2019. Retrieved 9 March 2019.
- "YPF Rally Argentina 2019 Entry List" (PDF). rallyargentina.com. Rally Argentina. 6 April 2019. Retrieved 6 April 2019.
- "Copec Rally Chile 2019 Entry List" (PDF). rallymobil.cl. Rally Chile. 18 April 2019. Retrieved 19 April 2019.
- Evans, David (1 December 2018). "Sebastien Loeb won't get Citroen WRC outings in 2019". autosport.com. Motorsport Network. Retrieved 2 December 2018.
- "Wilson steps back". wrc.com. WRC Promoter GmbH. 22 December 2018. Retrieved 22 December 2018.
- Evans, David (2 January 2019). "Hyundai splits with its World Rally team boss Nandan for 2019". autosport.com. Motorsport Network. Retrieved 2 January 2019.
- Evans, David (15 January 2019). "Marcus Gronholm back to WRC for Rally Sweden with a Toyota". autosport.com. Motorsport Network. Retrieved 15 January 2019.
- Evans, David (28 September 2018). "Sebastien Ogier picks Citroen for 2019 World Rally Championship". autosport.com. Motorsport Network. Retrieved 28 September 2018.
- "Esapekka Lappi Joins Citroën Total Abu Dhabi WRT". media.citroenracing.com. Citroën Total Abu Dhabi WRT. 17 October 2018. Retrieved 17 October 2018.
- Herrero, Dan (2 December 2018). "No third car, no Loeb for Citroen in 2019 WRC". speedcafe.com. Speedcafe. Retrieved 2 December 2018.
- "Mads Østberg is ready for WRC2-Pro with C3 R5". madsostberg.no. 14 January 2019. Retrieved 14 January 2019.
- Evans, David (28 September 2018). "M-Sport won't rush decision over 2019 WRC plans after Ogier's exit". autosport.com. Motorsport Network. Retrieved 28 September 2018.
- Klien, Jamie (21 December 2018). "Tidemand gets two WRC rounds with M-Sport". motorsport.com. Motorsport Network. Retrieved 21 December 2018.
- "Sebastien Loeb seals six-round 2019 WRC deal with Hyundai". autosport.com. Motorsport Network. 13 December 2018. Retrieved 13 December 2018.
- "Paddon left 'high and dry'". wrc.com. WRC Promoter GmbH. 14 December 2018. Retrieved 14 December 2018.
- Cozens, Jack (4 December 2018). "Toyota WRC team reveals Seb Marshall as Kris Meeke's co-driver". autosport.com. Motorsport Network. Retrieved 4 December 2018.
- "TOYOTA GAZOO Racing confirms WRC driver line-up for 2019". toyotagazooracing.com. Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT. 17 October 2018. Retrieved 17 October 2018.
- Evans, David (25 May 2018). "Citroen WRC team explains decision to axe 'not under control' Meeke". autosport.com. Motorsport Network. Retrieved 26 May 2018.
- "Rossi's Seventh Monza Success". wrc.com. WRC Promoter GmbH. 10 December 2018. Retrieved 11 December 2018.
He finished 1min 07.2sec clear of Finn Suninen, who was partnered by new co-driver Marko Salminen for the first time.
- "Toyota reveals 2019 programme for WRC protege Takamoto Katsuta". autosport.com. Motorsport Network. 19 December 2018. Retrieved 19 December 2018.
- Evans, David (21 December 2018). "M-Sport goes ahead with 2019 World Rally Championship entry". autosport.com. Motorsport Network. Retrieved 21 December 2018.
- "2019 Revamp for WRC 2". wrc.com. WRC Promoter GmbH. 15 October 2018. Retrieved 15 November 2018.
- Evans, David (12 January 2019). "WRC drivers' competition numbers revealed at Autosport International". autosport.com. Motorsport Network. Retrieved 12 January 2019.
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